Export Charts, Reports, and Books from Family Tree Maker

Charts and Reports in Family Tree Maker

In this section, we will discuss how to Export Charts, Reports, and Books from Family Tree Maker Software. Read the full Guide…

Trouble Export Charts Reports and publications from Family Tree Maker

Charts, reports, and books in Family Tree Maker are great ways to combine information into a very presentable, highly readable format. However, you sometimes may run into issues when you generate or export them, especially when they have a lot of data. There is no set limit within Family Tree Maker for these charts, reports, and book sizes. You may have other limitations on your computer.

Here, we will discuss four items:

  1. Potential Computer Limitations
  2. Chart and Reports
  3. Books
  4. Troubleshooting

1. Potential Computer Limitations

Any computer may have factors that slow or fail to generate and export publications (charts, reports, and books).

For example, Family Tree Maker Software, like all programs on your computer, uses a part of your RAM (Random Access Memory) to function.

When you run programs or background tasks at once, the amount of available RAM diminishes, causing processes to halt.

In the same spirit, your computer’s processor can only manage so many processes at a time, so if you run multiple programs at once, it can be attributed to a logjam in your processor power.

The more RAM on the computer and more the processing power you have available, the better chances a given program must complete the task you have had it involved in.

If you are having trouble with publication items (charts, reports, and books) slowing or freezing, try closing programs or background tasks and starting the process again.

While less of a concern with more modern computers, a low amount of remaining hard drive space can also cause undesirable behavior since it impedes the amount of virtual memory available.

As a rule, you should stop filling a hard drive with information when you reach about 90% capacity.

You can adjust virtual memory on a computer manually. If you have chosen to do this, make sure you are not setting it too low. The best choice is to let your operating system decide what amount is right for you.

2. Charts and Reports

While normally smaller than books, charts and reports in Family Tree Maker Software can still be quite big in size. In more recent versions of the software, the number of generations you can include in these publication types can go up to ninety-nine, which is much, much more than the average user would ever need.

To give a little perspective on this, a 10-generation report of only ancestors (no descendants) would be just over 1020 people. With an average of five people per page, you would end up with about 204 pages.

With that in mind, there are outlines of the format limitations you may run into with the more commonly used export options.




200” x 200” in poster layout


Poster layout not available for reports

These figures are more about the PDF format’s memory limitation than its physical dimensions. As such, these numbers are only approximating.

Depending on the amount of text, number, size of photos, etc., that you have on the chart/report, your size range may vary significantly. Should you exceed the memory limitations of the PDF format, you will only see a giant, red X across the viewer when trying to open it.

If you meet this, you will need to decrease the amount of information in your publication item. The Troubleshooting section below covers this.



2GB in all layouts


Not available in reports.



Not available in charts


Unlimited size, but the programs used to open this format have limitations.

512MB in Microsoft Word

3. Books

Because books simply chart and report combined, the same rules apply in terms of export limitations. The only difference is that you cannot export books in image formats.

Due to the nature of the book function, users tend to make them exceptionally bigger than they usually would an individual chart/report.

Bigger books can put more of a memorable impression on your system and burden your processor more heavily when trying to generate.

4. Troubleshooting

If you have trouble while you try to generate a publication item (charts, reports & books), you can try these things:
  • If your system seems to be slowing down while you generate or export, try to close other programs or background tasks. You can also try from a different computer with more RAM or a fast processor.
  • If your computer or the export choice is running out of memory while you export an item as a PDF, try an EMF or RTF instead.
  • EMFs are typically better for very large charts. Windows users can export to EMF or other image formats.
  • Unfortunately, the EMF options are not available to Mac users. However, you can try other image formats on that operating system as well.
  • Some PDF programs have larger memory buffers than others. Switching to a different reader, like PrimoPDF(Windows only), can sometimes allow you to view larger PDF files.
  • If your item is still too big to view/export successfully, you may want to consider splitting the publication or removing irrelevant information.
  • Examples of this would be to use lower resolution photos (if included) or remove the images altogether.
  • You can even do something like running one publication item for each of your parental lines (maternal side vs. paternal side).
  • Limiting your item to a certain number of ancestors and descendants can also be helpful.
  • Charts in the poster layout allow you to drag the person nodes around the chart area. Where real estate is a factor, this can allow you to reduce the number of inches/pages for the chart manually.
  • All charts have a “spacing option” that will allow you to decrease the distance between the person nodes, which may also fix size issues.

If you need any help, you can visit our Website, Family Tree Maker Support, or you can Chat With our Experts.

You can Contact our Family Tree Maker Support Number to resolve your issue. We provide phone support 24×7. The Family Tree Maker Support number is +1-888-257-3335.

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